Swim teacher’s life saved by couple’s good timing

Did you know in one year alone, 436,000 Americans die from a cardiac arrest?

According to the American Heart Association, CPR can double or triple chances of survival after cardiac arrest.

Each weekday, Kelsey and JT Summerford take their 1-year-old daughter to infant survival swim courses at her instructor Haley Gray’s house in Tuscaloosa County.

Two weeks ago, the Summerfords arrived and found Gray floating and unresponsive in the pool.

Not knowing how long she’d been unconscious, the Summerfords pulled Gray out of the water, called 911 and began alternating CPR.

“I am a mom and Hayley has three little boys,” Kelsey Summerford said. “I was yelling it at her while we were doing it. I was like you can’t leave these boys. They need their mama. We had to keep going for her and her family.”

The couple performed the compressions for nearly 9 minutes before first responders arrived and were able to restore Gray’s pulse.

Gray had no brain damage or side effects other than soreness from the CPR.

“I did get a laceration on my liver and spleen,” Haley said. “Doctors said from correct CPR performed, you are either going to break ribs or your spleen and liver might have a tear in them. That was just showing how much how much intensity they were putting into saving my life. You never think you are going to need that but they stepped up. It was incredible.”

She said doctors have not been able to determine what happened.

Gray is the mother of three young boys, and she said she’s calling the Summerfords her heroes. The Summerfords, though, said God is the true hero here.

“That is what we just keep telling people,” Kelsey said. “We were the people here, but we were used as vessels. We were. This is a miracle that it wasn’t just us. We are not early people. We were early. We were both here. We both know CPR. The only way we can describe that is by the grace of God that all of that happened. ”

Gray said she plans to resume her Infant Swimming Resource classes as soon as she is cleared.

If you’d like to register for CPR classes, you can contact your local American Red Cross or visit the American Heart Association‘s website for courses offered in your area.
Categories: Featured, Local News